Better sex

Better sex without Tina
What can we expect and what can we do about it?
Developing a new sexual life

What can we expect and what can we do about it?

Being hard on yourself

Remember the context. You may be used to an extreme level of intensity and focus on sex. Your brains and dick may be hard-wired for Tina. You may have reinforced sex combined with Tina to the point that whenever you think of sex you think of using. The adjustments necessary to de-link sex and Tina for many of us are huge. We will overemphasize our sense of failure whenever we slip, often as a pretext for using again. Try and avoid this. Being gentle with yourself produces faster results.

Setting unrealistc goals

Some of us get so disgusted with ourselves, especially after a binge or personal crisis, that we are highly motivated to change at this point. Use this opportunity, but try and not squander it by setting goals of abstinence right away. It is smarter to set smaller goals like cutting back and building success in small steps. You will know in time if you need to quit completely or not.


Most challenges are more difficult in the early stages of transition. With Tina, we are used to quick fixes. Know that change is a process. Know that it takes ongoing commitment. Know that it often takes a long time. Know that it does get better. Know that if others have done it so can you or someone you care about.


It’s common to feel confused about what is triggering a craving. We experience an event as stressful, we feel horny, we feel depressed, sorry for ourselves, lonely, or overwhelmed. Many guys find it helpful to begin to sort out what is causing the trigger to use Tina again. When you begin to feel a craving, step back and do a check in. If your habit is to engage in other compulsive behaviors like sex, eating, shopping or gambling, it is helpful not to indulge or substitute those compulsions. Monitoring yourself in this way can be a useful practice to help discover other parts of yourself, as well as underlying causes of our triggers. The expanding awareness you gain from this practice will alleviate the confusion and help you better target alternative responses in keeping with your new goals.


It’s a reality for many of us, especially at the early stages. Our existing patterns, social circles and networks may be associated with sex, Tina, or unsupportive of the changes we are trying to make. Anticipating loneliness and developing other options we can engage in can be helpful in an ongoing way, and also when we are in a deeper slump. Some guys call an understanding friend for a phone conversation, journal, go for a walk or bike ride, go to the gym or engage in other physical activity, garden, go to a movie or rent a DVD, attend a support meeting, meet a friend for dinner, meditate, do yoga or tai chi, attend a church service, acquire a pet, take a workshop or class, join a club, explore a new neighbourhood, or engage in a volunteer commitment. Whatever you do, it is best not to engage in activities when lonely that increase the desire to have sex or use Tina.


Especially at the beginning of change, we tend to focus on loss. You may be caught up in all that you are missing about not having sex with Tina or not having sex at all. This is common. It’s also necessary. It’s part of a grief process. Acknowledging this and allowing yourself to feel this without descending into self-pity and ‘poor me’ thinking is a challenge. Staying focused on what you are gaining by reducing or eliminating Tina with sex can help. It’s also important to remember the cumulative small successes you might experience each week. In addition, it’s helpful to remember the context of a Tina induced depression that will increase the tendency towards sad thoughts. This source of sadness will lesson as our brain chemistry returns to more normal levels.

A need for support

This is a lot for anyone. Many guys find benefit from talking about what they are going through. Talking to a friend or partner, working with an individual therapist, in a group setting, or in some combination together is going to be worthwhile not only to express yourself, but to get feedback and learn from others. Some guys find expression through writing, art, music or other creative outlets helpful as well.

TIP: For help with professional services available in Toronto please refer to our Resource Guide.

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